Mayor to Honor 2012 Stewardship Award Winners at Sustainable Living Expo Sept. 29

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The City of Virginia Beach and the Environment and Sustainability Office are pleased to announce the winners of the 2012 Stewardship Awards Program. The program recognizes residents, organizations and businesses that demonstrate initiative and leadership in achieving a healthier outdoor environment.


Applications were received from a diverse group of residents, businesses, groups, builders and developers.  Judging was provided by volunteers from the Virginia Beach Master Gardeners Program.  Winners will be recognized by Mayor William D. Sessoms, Jr. at the Virginia Beach Convention Center during the Hampton Roads Sustainable Living Expo at 2 p.m. on Sept. 29. Top winners are:


·         Residential - Joyce Williams


This project involved 95 percent replacement of the lawn area with flower beds, native plants, trees, shrubs and mulch pathways. It also created habitats for birds, wildlife and beneficial insects, and made sitting areas for people. The vegetation used was indigenous to our region and is well-suited to our climate and soils, and will likely require minimal maintenance, irrigation and nutrients. 


·         Business/Nonprofit - Mary’s Garden


This project is the first healing patient garden for the hospital community at Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital. It was conceived, financed and built by volunteers.  Upon entering the garden, visitors forget the hospital setting and find their spirits transported to a place where they are well and happy. This beautiful and pleasing addition welcomes all visitors and even pets. The garden provides emotional and physical benefits for patients, nurses, doctors, volunteers, employees and visitors. 


·         Business/Residential – WPL Site Design for Dukas Residence


This project is for new residential construction in the Bishop’s Gate area of Kings Grant, encompassing a large forested peninsula.  The criteria of the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act were the main guiding design principles.  The house was sited to obtain optimum solar orientation and to take advantage of the beautiful views of marshes surrounding the property.


·         Business/Non-Residential – WPL Site Design for the phased Virginia Beach Middle School and Beach Garden Park projects


Virginia Beach Middle School and Beach Garden Park was a multiphased school replacement project. Phase one in this five-year process was the design and renovation of Beach Garden Park into athletic fields and facilities. Special sustainable design features were installed, such as permeable paver parking areas, buffer and wetland mitigation plantings, and rainwater management and water quality enhancements.  Virginia Beach Middle School was designed to capture and redirect rainwater from all roof and paving areas into six rain gardens, planted with native vegetation.  Both projects set new standards for environmental design and construction practices.


·         Special Recognition Award – College Park Elementary School


The replacement of College Park Elementary School was designed to be the next generation prototype elementary school for Virginia Beach and to achieve LEED Platinum certification. The project has a highly sustainable site and building design. The school has exceeded every minimum development requirement for community connectivity, runoff reduction, storm water treatment, erosion and sediment control, among others.  


The Green ribbon Committee, appointed by the City Council, established the Stewardship Awards Program in 2009 to recognize exemplary environmental stewardship projects undertaken by new residential and commercial projects. The first awards were presented at the 2010 Earth Day celebration.


For additional information, contact Clay Bernick in the Planning Department’s Environment and Sustainability Office at (757) 385-4621 or